With PAX East happening this week, obviously everyone involved in gaming is surrounding the event, either in-person or through coverage. At one of the earlier panels, Penny Arcade founders Mike Krahulik and Jerry Holkins officially announced plans to expand PAX to the south with PAX South. The convention will take place January 23rd through the 25th in San Antonio, TX.
This will be the fourth annual expo to be held by Penny Arcade since PAX began in 2004. From what started with just over 3,000 congregating in a Seattle convention center expanded in 2010 to PAX East in Boston and PAX Australia last year. Both shows here in the States usually get around 60,000 fans and tickets are sold out minutes after they go on sale.
Penny Arcade Business Manager Robert Khoo said,
Since its launch in 2004, PAX events have doubled in size almost every year, and our Seattle and Boston events represent the two largest gaming festivals in North America. We've been hearing for years that those in the south had a tough time making it to the northern corners of the country; PAX South has always been a matter of 'when' rather than 'if.'
Khoo even tweeted a picture of a wall of clocks, with an unnamed clock set to the Central Time Zone. Many assumed Chicago would be the next choice, but luckily the folks in the south are now able to have PAX in their backyard.
Khoo also took some time to address some of the issues surrounding Penny Arcade in a recent interview with Polygon. On the topics of rape and gender identity, both founders have said some pretty insensitive things. Congoers sometimes feel out of place at the events, leading to a level of segregation between cosplayers and regular fans, with cosplayers even being publically ridiculed and humiliated. Of course, the parties involved have now apologized for their comments and are trying to make the convention a better place for all people who attend. Krahulik made a public New Year's Resolution to change himself and his company. Khoo said in the interview that, "I really do believe we're done with these incidents" and that exhibitors haven't pulled out of the conventions as a result of the remarks, given the apologies.
Are you excited about PAX South? Are you boycotting all PAX events? The events that have transpired to lead up to public outcry could fill an entire day, so we won't get into all of it here. However, we do want to know what you think in the comments below, so feel free to sound off. For me, I know that if the overall sentiment from PAX East is that the founders have actually done a good job improving the atmosphere and their behavior, then I might be more inclined to attend my first PAX event ever in San Antonio.